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Too many overlays will bring us down

So, a part closing envelopes, last night and today I’m working to fix as many bug as I can with the time I’m given, as I want ot use the time I have before starting new jobs as much as I can for Gentoo, in the case I won’t have enough time later (although I hope to still have some afterward).

Today I’ll be working on patching a some software for FLAC 1.1.3 support, thanks to Josh Coalson (FLAC upstream) who has provided already three patches: kdemultimedia, k3b and vorbis-tools. Last night instead, as I had the chroot on pitr still opened, I decided to spend more time testing and fixing the bugs for CJK that Patrick reported through his tinderbox effort.

The result is that I’ve dedicated also this morning to fixing CJK bugs.. considering my Japanese is waaay limited, and I decided to help the herd just because I had free time, they missed manpower, and I had a few changes to merge, being able to fix stuff there is something that makes me feel a bit better toward my involvement. Unfortunately as I said I can’t really use most of the software there, and this disallow me from trying it too 🙁

It’s sad to see so little people involved lately 🙁 Most of the CJK packages are unmaintained.. I fixed cannadic eclass and the canna packages not to have a canna useflag, but this does not entirely help… I’ve been told there’s a gentoo-china overlay, but I cannot find it in layman and I don’t remember seeing much things from that in bugzilla…

Then it comes the news from the sound herd. ReZound is masked and pending removal next month, if nobody steps up to maintain it. The problem is that currently, under the sound herd you can find desktop multimedia applications like Amarok and Audacious, libraries mostly used by video software like a52dec and libdts, and professional audio software like Audacity and ReZound. In the past there were also ALSA drivers and packages, they are now instead on their own herd, which means that if you look up alsa-driver you get a more truthful response (me and phreak being the ones handling its bugs) rather than the whole sound herd… for professional audio software there is almost nobody taking care of it lately, especially now that kito is being retired.

And then, I’m told by lavish on #gentoo-it that there’s a proaudio overlay . Why fraction this way the efforts? Why instead of creating an overlay they cannot become official developers? 😐

I’ll try to write an appeal for the next GWN, trying to get more people involved with professional audio software in Portage, and maybe something for CJK could help. The problem is to establish at least some kind of trust relationship, so that the packages can be proxy maintained… I don’t know a thing about pro audio software, but I know quite enough of ebuild development for handling a proxy maintainership I suppose 😉

Anyway, if you’re interested, feel free to drop me a line, I’ll try to answer as soon as I can!

Comments 7
  1. Overlays are useful, if the official Gentoo developers are involved there. User can contribute and test to help out, but without a connection to the official Portage tree we lose ground.

  2. I actually disagree, though am not really a developer, so I guess my words go with a grain of salt.I have maintained the mpd-portage overlay for over a year now, it’s probably one of the best things that I’ve done for MPD over the last 4 years. The main reason I started it is because it’s _way_ too hard, and too long a process to get things into portage. Which is fine, everyone has a life and not everything can make it in that people want to install (obviously). It maybe a bit of duplicated effort, but the effort usually minimal in the first place.Not to mention there’s plenty of attitude in b.g.o. and I believe some, if not alot of people are disenfranchised to it all. It literally takes me less time to produce work than if I was actually part of Gentoo.

  3. Hi, I’m interested in (C)J(K) (from the user POV). I *finally* got SCIM + deadkeys working with Qt3 apps, but Qt4 uses different IME approach (it has built-in support for IMEs) so SCIM doesn’t work and neither do deadkeys when SCIM is enabled. :(I’d also love to use Gjiten but it fails to compile for me. I guess I’ll make few tests and then file a bug. :)So, if you want to test something Japanese-related, drop me a message, I might help you.IM

  4. Avuton, I admit the current bugzilla interface is way less than optimal, but the way to fix is not to isolate yourself, but to try a different kind of collaboration, in my opinion.That’s why I said I’d like some proxy maintainership for this kind of packages, as that’s probably a good compromise between being a dev and maintain an overlay that’s totally separate from Gentoo.

  5. You’ve got a point. It will be a challenge to keep track of herd overlays and still bring a sense of cohesion to the project.

  6. While I don’t speak Japanese (I can BARELY read it), I do use Japanese tools (SCIM, Anthy, etc.) as it is an interest of mine.If nothing else I could help test (like an Arch Tester), just don’t ask me anything about the language and we’ll be ok :-).Just tossing my hat into the ring.

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